By: Franyi Sarmiento, Ph.D., Inspenet, July 11, 2022
Turkey announced the discovery of the world’s second largest deposit of rare earths, which would reduce Western dependence on supplies from China.
Turkey’s Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources reported last week that it is 694 million tons of rare earths lying in the Central Anatolia region. By way of comparison, the largest deposit, located in China, has 800 million tons of rare earths.
Ten of the 17 known elements – including scandium, yttrium and 15 lanthanides – rare earth elements are expected to be extracted from the new deposit, according to forecasts by Turkish Energy Minister Fatih Dönmez.
“We will process 570,000 tons of ore annually. We will obtain 10,000 tons of rare earth oxide from this processed ore,” Dönmez assured during a visit to the deposit, located in the Beylikova district.
Last Friday, the minister tweeted that a pilot mill will be built this year with an annual processing capacity of 1,200 tons.
“We are at our Eti Maden Beylikova facility. We will complete the construction of our 1200-ton pilot plant this year. With the results obtained here, we will start preparations for our industrial plant, which will produce 570 thousand tons of history” he stated on the social network.
Rare earths have magnetic and conductive properties that are used in a wide range of products, from electric car components and touch screens for smartphones to missile defense systems.
According to a U.S. Geological Survey report, 240,000 tons of rare earths were mined worldwide in 2020, 140,000 of them in China, according to a quota set by Beijing. These data are consistent with those of a report published in June 2021 by the White House, which estimates that China controls 55% of rare earth mining. It also states that the Asian country is responsible for 85 % of the refining process of these elements.
This material from the Actualidad RT portal in Spanish was edited for clarity, style and length.
Source Actualidad RT in Spanish: https://actualidad.rt.com/actualidad/435057-turquia-anunciar-hallazgo-segundo-mayor-yacimiento-tierras-raras